Jimbooo's 450L / 100G high tech journal

Discussion in 'Journals' started by James Flexton, 25 Sep 2007.

  1. James Flexton

    James Flexton Member

    Messages:
    358
    Location:
    Stotfold, Herts/Beds
    Hi Gang,

    Well here i am on day one of a long awaited project. apparently my Vision 450 will arrive on a delivery van all the way from Liverpool sometime between 1200 and 1800 today.

    so far i have spent £55 on 3 juwel backing tiles and a tube of silicon. plus £630 for the tank and stand from here http://www.pet-supermarket.co.uk/erol.html#19972X0

    on the shopping list is the following

    - twin T5 ballast and tubes
    - additional external filter
    - 5 bags of ecocomplete
    - bag of play sand (split substrate)
    - some kind of PVC strip (like a giant ruler??) to divide the substrate
    - one mega piece of wood
    - multiple socket extension lead with timers
    - co2 tubing (got reg, diffuser and FE already)

    plants are not finalised yet, aiming for foreground of play sand (off set to the left), glosso or HC carpet in front mid ground to the edge of the ecocomplete. anubias (plenty of) on the wood and various red stems in the background.

    50 - 100 cardinals (depending on the look of the shoal as i go along, 15 at a time)
    my plec from the rio180
    6 sterbai corys from the 180 plus 4 more mates for the group
    6 discus as long as i can find some euro bred hard water tolerant specimens.

    i'm taking this slowly to get everything just right. i rushed into the 180 and paid the price later on.

    as they dropped the last one on loading the lorry fingers crossed this one arrives on schedule.
     
  2. bugs

    bugs Member

    Messages:
    356
    OMG the 450 is massive... Concrete or suspended floor?
     
  3. James Flexton

    James Flexton Member

    Messages:
    358
    Location:
    Stotfold, Herts/Beds
    yeah tell me about it lol. concrete floor thank god.

    right then. that's one busy day over with, the tank arrived at 2pm. the driver wasn't insured to lift it so jacked up the pallet on a trolley, lowered down his tail lift and promptly dumped it on my driveway. after very helpfully asking how the hell i was going to get that in the house on my own he was off on his way chuckling to himself. not to worry i thought I'll just leave it there and wait till the neighbors get home and I'll beg some muscle....then the rain came down. Somehow i manage to heave it inside, more dragging than lifting (thank god for the pallet).

    v1.jpg

    After 30 mins of fighting with the flat pack stand it was up.

    v2.jpg
    v3.jpg

    then the misses popped home from work and offered her help lifting the tank in place. blimey that was nerve racking. another second and it would have dropped this thing weighs a ton.

    v4.jpg

    i really am pleased i stuck with Juwel i know under it all it's a chipboard stand and mainstream all-in-one tank but it does look good. i was also pleasantly surprised that it came with the new T5 lights.

    i have now fitted the backing tiles and am ready to start buying all the other stuff. it may take a while though as I'm a bit skint till end of October. hopefully I'll get substrate and wood next week but the plants etc will have to wait for now. i don't want to half do it and cut corners so it will be worthwhile waiting a bit. plus i need to eat in the meantime.

    excuse the cardboard, one of the tiles just doesn't want to stick, it' not flat so kept popping out on one side.

    v5.jpg

    good night all.
     

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  4. Dan Crawford

    Dan Crawford Founder Staff Member

    Messages:
    3,266
    Location:
    Daventry, Northants
    good god man, 3.29 AM you wrote that, i can't even write my name after about 10 oclock :wideyed:

    That tank looks great and it's massive, so much potential.
    I can't wait to see your progress, i'm sure it will look stunning!

    Good luck.
     
  5. bugs

    bugs Member

    Messages:
    356
    Can't quite work out from the pics, are you keeping the Juwel internal filter?
     
  6. James Flexton

    James Flexton Member

    Messages:
    358
    Location:
    Stotfold, Herts/Beds
    lol yeah tell me about it. mind you today isn't much better! i love all this space I've spent two evenings looking at an empty tank planning the layout i just want to go wood shopping now and find that perfect piece but cant get out until Saturday. how frustrating.

    Bugs - yes. i have always kept the juwel filters in my previous tanks i think they are very efficient especially at water polishing. i have supplemented it in the past with another external (fluval 104 on my rio 180) but as the intake on that was at the substrate level it did not remove any particles in the top level of the water column.
    i the juwel i use a pond filter wool on top of blue sponges (obviously no carbon or nitrate remover). the pond wool comes in a big sack for £3.95.i can put in about a 5 inch slab every week or so and it still costs a fraction of the cost using the official juwel replacements. the wool is a little finer as well so all round better than juwel's
    i will plan the scape to hide the box dont worry about that. the piece of wood i want should mostly hide it anyway. it will be rather large!
     
  7. George Farmer

    George Farmer Founder Staff Member

    Messages:
    7,089
    Location:
    Cambridgeshire
    Looking good mate.

    No pressure, but we're expecting great things from this, James. ;)
     
  8. James Flexton

    James Flexton Member

    Messages:
    358
    Location:
    Stotfold, Herts/Beds
    feel free to pile on the pressure, i thrive on it lol. you will have to be patient though. substrate is being ordered tonight then cycle for a few weeks. i wont be planting until octobers paycheck (quarterly bonus to blow whoohoo)

    extra lights, co2 plants etc will all go in at once so i will have a big unplanted swimming pool for a month with a couple of fish in to cycle. not really worthy of pics but i expect i'll put some up to keep you updated.

    i was meaning to ask what i should use to cycle (dont suggest fishless please i know the reasons but am not doing that) i was going to put a few platies in then the plec after 2 weeks. keeping a close eye on water obviously and changing where necessary. i wont poison them and let them suffer dont panic. i assume in 100G of water the amount of nitrite will be negligable with say 4 platies in there. what do you think?

    if i can get some from the LFS i may dump a load of waterprite in to take up the ammonia that should give me a small margin for error and save the fish any unpleasantness
     
  9. Dan Crawford

    Dan Crawford Founder Staff Member

    Messages:
    3,266
    Location:
    Daventry, Northants
    Fish to cycle IMO would have to be zebra danios. Great fish, get quite big and would do well in a planted tank that size. They have great colour when there in good condition.
     
  10. George Farmer

    George Farmer Founder Staff Member

    Messages:
    7,089
    Location:
    Cambridgeshire
    Fish choice is up to your taste. Personally I'd wait until planting but if you can't then anything hardy.

    JTo help things along, especially if you're not planting for a while, use some old media from your other tanks. Squeeze the old sponges out into your new fliter.

    Squeeze some gunk out onto the tank floor before adding substrate.

    Put some old substrate as a base layer too to kick start the bacteria in the substrate. Ecocomplete is supposed to contain some anyway but 'real' stuff will be better.
     
  11. Maximumbob

    Maximumbob Member

    Messages:
    119
    Location:
    Cheshire, UK
    I would say a plec is a bit too messy to do a fish cycle with. I'm with Dan.. if you must.. then zebra danios.
     
  12. zig

    zig Member

    Messages:
    686
    Location:
    Dublin Ireland
    Looks good James

    Just use media from one of your other filters, job done, add fish :D
     
  13. ceg4048

    ceg4048 Expert/Global Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    8,937
    Location:
    Chicago, USA
    Hi Jim,
    FYI, the NH4/NO2 concentrations will build up to the same levels in 100g as they would in a 10g, it'll just take longer. You've got more surface area, more gravel, more filter media and more water for bacteria to colonize so having 100g just means you'll have more of everything good and bad. From your signature photo (top grade by the way) it looks like you're not one for carpet plants, but if your were considering it you may want to check out this radical approach to tank cycling, waterless: http://www.barrreport.com/articles/3361 ... water.html

    Essentially start with a terrarium and grow the plants emersed. They arrive in emersed form anyway so just stick them in as you get them and the substrate cycles. No mess, no hassle, no algae, no fish to feed and you can take your time. The technique is primarily with carpet plants in mind but there is no reason it can't be done for stems and rosettes. A few weeks later just add water.

    P.S.
    Wow, 100g on a carpeted floor? I'm not worthy!! As many gaffes as I've had so far I'd probably have algae growing in my carpet by now if I had tried that. Tell us your secret Oh Great One!

    Cheers,
     
  14. Matt Holbrook-Bull

    Matt Holbrook-Bull Founder

    Messages:
    963
    Location:
    Dorset, UK
    :) for cycling, I fishlessly cycle using a pure NH4 source. Zero to full stock in no time.
     
  15. beeky

    beeky Member

    Messages:
    879
    Location:
    Chippenham, Wiltshire
    You can get bottles of ammonia from Homebase for £1.99.

    Surely, if you're adding plants and doing water changes to reduce the ammonia so the fish aren't damaged, then this will also slow the cycling of the tank.

    I like the idea of filling the tank with water (nothing else) and doing a fishless cycle. Then, empty, clean, plant, refill etc and switch everything back on. You could run the filter in a bucket of water with an ammonia source to keep it ticking over, but it may not be worth it depending how long the aquascaping takes.
     
  16. Matt Holbrook-Bull

    Matt Holbrook-Bull Founder

    Messages:
    963
    Location:
    Dorset, UK
    be very careful buying off the shelf sources of ammonia, more often then not they add surficants to the mixture. The easy way to tell (unfortunately you have to buy it first) is to open the bottle, shake it.. if there are bubbles on the surface, then its got soap in it, which is bad.
     
  17. James Flexton

    James Flexton Member

    Messages:
    358
    Location:
    Stotfold, Herts/Beds
    thanks for all the input people.

    ceg4048 - fair point in paragraph one. didn't think of that. I will be carpeting. sand front, carpet some front & midground (divided substrate). i have read that article. sounds great and i would try it however i am skint until the end of october and i am looking at an empty tank at present. plants will cost me at least £250 plus i want an ADA diffuser. wood will be at least £100 so thats already £450. i have ordered ecocomplete from ebay. 6 bags for £120 incl postage but cant afford anything else until octobers bonus payment! in an ideal world i would set it all up together and put fish straight in. but i have to eat and pay the bills in the meantime.

    carpeted floor - the misses is a carpetright store manager! that helps lol. also i have checked and tank burstage is covered on my household policy. the trick is to buy some bathmats and put in front of tha tank when you have your arms in. they have a waterproof bottom so soak up drips without soaking through. never spilt a drop, not even when moving the tank (180) out.

    i do like zebra danio's as i cycled my 180 with them however i was then stuck with them for 4 years and dont want them in this scape. my lfs will not take fish from the public under any circumstances so i would be stuck with them. i have platies in the 180 at work so was going to rehome them for cycle and put them back afterwards.

    good point about old sponges zig / george, durr why did i not think of that, i will take half the rio sponges home with me from work and stick them in.

    ecocomplete will be here in a few days i'll keep you posted.
     
  18. Maximumbob

    Maximumbob Member

    Messages:
    119
    Location:
    Cheshire, UK
    cloning FTW!!!
     
  19. James Flexton

    James Flexton Member

    Messages:
    358
    Location:
    Stotfold, Herts/Beds
    sorry maximumbob whats FTW?
     
  20. Maximumbob

    Maximumbob Member

    Messages:
    119
    Location:
    Cheshire, UK
    It means 'For The Win'.
     

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